Six Different Rookies Lead Seven Player-Centric Categories, Including Memphis’s Ja Morant, Atlanta’s Cam Reddish and Miami’s Tyler Herro
NBA.com’s survey of NBA rookies predicts that New Orleans’ Zion Williamson (35% of the vote, highest in the category since 2015) will win Kia NBA Rookie of the Year honors this season. Fourteen different players received at least one vote, with Memphis’s Ja Morant finishing second with 27% of the vote. Williamson also set an all-time record in survey history for vote percentage in any category by being named on 87% of ballots for most athletic.
The NBA.com Rookie Survey, compiled earlier this month at Panini’s NBA Rookie Shoot in Madison, N.J., by reporter John Schuhmann, asked 42 of this year’s rookies for their favorites in a variety of categories including best playmaker and best shooter.
Morant was the runaway leader for best playmaker, garnering 40% of votes, more than twice as many as the runner-up in the category (Cleveland’s Darius Garland, 15%). The No. 2 overall pick for the Grizzlies also finished second for best career behind Atlanta’s Cam Reddish, who became the sixth consecutive Duke player to win the category (19% of the vote).
Miami’s Tyler Herro was voted the best shooter (33%), pacing just ahead of Sacramento’s Kyle Guy (29%).
The first-year players were also asked to name their favorite current NBA stars, with the Los Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James (38%) ranking atop the list for the third consecutive year, followed by Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant (20%), with the LA Clippers’ Kawhi Leonard and Portland’s Damian Lillard tied for third (8% each).
Denver’s Bol Bol and Cleveland’s Kevin Porter, Jr. tied as the biggest steals of this year’s NBA Draft (19% each), with 20 players receiving at least one vote, ranging from Coby White – taken 7th overall by Chicago – to Quinndary Weatherspoon (pick No. 49 by San Antonio).
Complete survey results are available at NBA.com. Players were not allowed to vote for themselves or their college and NBA teammates.
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